Parenting not only involves caring for your children, but the simple acts of your lifestyle inform their actions as they grow. Children learn from what we do and how we do it, so leading a sustainable life is not only good for the environment, but it can also be beneficial for your children.
It can teach them better habits as they grow while saving the planet one piece of clothing at a time. A survey has found that 67% of parents would like to start using more sustainable products with their children.
Here, we will explore ways your parenting can be eco-friendlier, from your kid’s waterproof jacket to their spaghetti Bolognese.
When it comes to getting new clothing items for your little ones, it can be easy to visit fast fashion stores, both in person and online. However, there is a range of great sustainable kidswear brands like Mini Rodini and Pellegrine.
Some might consider buying second hand pieces in charity shops, carb-boot sales, or even local buying and selling pages on social media. Some of those pieces might be barely or never worn before. And in a number of instances, repairing might be a better option than altogether discarding an item.
Cleaning our laundry can have a detrimental effect on our environment, and with little children who can get into a lot of mess, it is easy for this laundry pile to build up. However, small changes to your laundry routine can ensure you are helping the environment.
Washing your clothes at a lower temperature can help save not only on your household’s carbon emissions but also bring your bills down. In fact, 30 degrees Celsius washes are gentler, and most clothing items don’t need above this.
You can also use more environmentally friendly detergents that are free from harsh chemicals, which don’t only contribute to water pollution but could also be skin irritants for your children. Products such as Ecoeggs can also cut down your plastic use as a reusable detergent option.
One way to be more sustainable at home is by changing your diet. By going vegan and cutting out red meat, you can reduce your carbon footprint – according to Uswitch, by opting for just one vegan day a week, you can save nearly 143kgs of carbon dioxide a year.
Another option to help reduce your carbon footprint, and become a more eco-conscious parent, is by shopping local. Your local produce suppliers, such as farmers and butchers, can be a great alternative to high carbon footprint supermarket alternatives. This way, you can also support your local economy by opting for small businesses instead of chain ones.
You can also opt to grow your own produce by putting an allotment in your garden or paying for an allotment space with your local council. This way, you can also encourage your children to explore their food, from seed to plate.
Going green is a continual process, and education is important. Our children are the future of environmental conservation, so teaching them the importance of sustainable choices and their impact on the environment can be beneficial in the long run.
You can even enrol your children into forest school for them to explore nature in a safe learning environment as well as develop their confidence.
Sustainable toys are another way you can contribute to green parenting. Whether this is choosing items which are single-use, plastic free or second-hand toys, your children can still play and learn without contributing to a carbon footprint.
Another way of encouraging your children to consider their impact on the environment and others’ lives is by donating unused toys. Particularly around birthdays and Christmas, you can focus on donating excess toys, making room for new ones and giving to charity.
Whether you are looking to improve your own sustainability or want to educate your children on the importance of environmentally friendly choices, green parenting doesn’t have to be complicated. Small lifestyle changes such as choosing second hand over new and opting for one vegan meal a week can make a massive change.